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Rehabilitation of Trafficked Children in India: Socio and Legal framework

The Ministry of Women and Child Development told parliament that 19,223 women and children were trafficked a year ago against 15,448 of every 2015, with the highest number of victims recorded in West Bengal.

Rehabilitation of Trafficked Children in India: Socio and Legal framework

Abstract
Child trafficking is widely a threat of global proportions. In India, almost 20,000 children and women were victims of human trafficking in 2016, a rise of nearly 25 percent from the previous year, government data released on Thursday showed. The Ministry of Women and Child Development told parliament that 19,223 women and children were trafficked a year ago against 15,448 of every 2015, with the highest number of victims recorded in West Bengal. The issue of trafficking of children for business sexual abuse and forced lobour so on is particularly challenging because of its heap complexities and variation. Poverty, low status of women, lack of a protective environment etc. are some of the causes for trafficking. This article deals with the framework of trafficking child victims. It discusses major areas of child trafficking, steps taken by the government to prevent the child trafficking, role of state in rescue, rehabilitation and reintegration of trafficked child victims. It also covers the activities of national and international agencies in the prevention of child trafficking.

Introduction
Child Trafficking is a crime which involves movement of children so as to exploit them. Trafficking of children for commercial sexual exploitation and labour etc. is an organized crime that violates basic human rights. Poverty, lack of a protective environment etc. are some of the causes for trafficking. Remembering the above issues and holes the government has defined numerous Central Schemes for Prevention of Trafficking for Rescue, Rehabilitation and Re-Integration of child Victims of Trafficking "comprehensive Scheme for Prevention of Trafficking for Rescue, Rehabilitation and Re-Integration of Victims of Trafficking for Commercial Sexual Exploitation-Ujjawala". The new plan has been imagined basically with the end goal of preventing trafficking from one viewpoint and rescue and rehabilitation of child victims on the other.

India is a source, destination, and transit country for children subjected to forced labor and sex trafficking. Within India, some are subjected to forced labor in sectors such as construction, steel, and textile industries; wire manufacturing for underground cables; biscuit factories; pickling; floriculture; fish farms; and ship breaking. In addition to bonded labor, some children are subjected to forced labor as factory and agricultural workers, domestic servants, and beggars. Begging ringleaders sometimes maim children to earn more money. Some NGOs and media report girls are sold and forced to conceive and deliver babies for sale. Conditions amounting to forced labor may be present in the “Sumangalischeme” in Tamil Nadu, in which employers pay young women a lump sum, used for a dowry, at the end of multi-year labor contracts. A few children, purportedly as youthful as 6 years of age, are persuasively expelled from their families and constrained by separatist gatherings, for example, the Maoists in Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, West Bengal, and Odisha to go about as spies and dispatches, plant ad libbed touchy gadgets, and battle against the government.

Experts’ estimates millions of children are victims of sex trafficking in India. Traffickers increasingly use websites, mobile applications, and online money transfers to facilitate commercial sex. Children keep on being subjected to sex trafficking in religious journey focuses and tourist destinations. Many child girls—predominately from Nepal and Bangladesh and from Europe, Central Asia, and Asia, including minority populations from Burma—are subjected to sex trafficking in India. Prime destinations for both Indian and foreign child trafficking victims include Kolkata, Mumbai, Delhi, Gujarat, Hyderabad, and along the India-Nepal border; Nepali women and girls are increasingly subjected to sex trafficking in Assam, and other cities such as Nagpur and Pune. Some law authorization officers protect suspected child traffickers and brothel owners from law requirement endeavours, take bribes from sex trafficking foundations and sexual services from victims, and tip off sex and labor traffickers to hinder safeguard efforts.

Some Indian migrants who willingly seek employment in construction, domestic service, and other low-skilled sectors in the Middle East and, to a lesser extent, other regions face forced labor, often following recruitment fraud and exorbitant recruitment fees charged by labor brokers. Some Bangladeshi migrants are subjected to forced labor in India through recruitment fraud and debt bondage. Following the April 2015 Nepal earthquake, Nepali women who transit through India are increasingly subjected to trafficking in the Middle East and Africa. Some boys from Bihar are subjected to forced labor in embroidery factories in Nepal, while some boys from Nepal and Bangladesh are subjected to forced labor in coal mines in the state of Meghalaya, although reportedly on a smaller scale than in previous years. Burmese Rohingya, Sri Lankan Tamil, and other refugee populations continue to be vulnerable to forced labor in India.

The Government of India does not completely meet the base standards for the disposal of trafficking; be that as it may, it is endeavoring critical endeavors to do as such. Sfor the first time, the National Crime Record Bureau's Crime in India report included information on trafficking investigations, prosecution, and convictions. The information exhibited enthusiastic endeavours to combat human trafficking but reflected a moderately low number of law authorization activity for the size of trafficking in India and a low conviction rate by and large. Moreover, the scope of law enforcement action on forced labor and the range of sentences applied to convicted traffickers remained unclear because the data was not comprehensive. The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) revised its strategy guiding Anti-Human Trafficking Units (AHTUs), to ensure more effective identification and investigation of trafficking cases and coordination with other agencies to refer victims to rehabilitation services. However, overall victim protection remained inadequate and inconsistent, and the government sometimes penalized victims through arrests for crimes committed as a result of being subjected to human trafficking. The government revised, but did not repeal, its policy restricting travel of some Indians identified as trafficking victims abroad by a foreign government and of their family members.

International Legal Framework on Trafficking of Children
There are a number of international conventions and instruments which have been enacted to counter trafficking in human beings and measures for its eradication. Some of the most important documents regulating the problem of trafficking in children are:

Convention on the Rights of the Child
The united nation’sConvention on the Rights of the Child[1]is the most important and dynamic tool for the promotion and protection of child rights. The Convention guarantees the right to survival and development of the children, as well as protection from all forms of neglect, abuse and exploitation. The state signatories have taken the pledge for developing and implementing adequate national, bilateral and multilateral measures for the prevention of the abuse, sale or trade of children for whatever purpose and in whatever form. Besides, the signatory states are also obliged to undertake all measures needed for the physical and psychological recovery and social re-integration of the child-victim in an environment beneficial to the health, self-esteem and dignity of the child. This includes, in the first place, the right to be accommodated in shelters and have access to health and educational institutions.

Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography (2000)

The Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography supplements the Convention on the Rights of the Child in which prostitution and the trade in children are explicitly deemed violations of the rights of the child.

Convention on the Worst Forms of Child Labour
The International Labour Organisation Convention no. 182 on the Worst Forms of Child Labour outlines four worse forms of child labour abuse which are:
1.All forms of slavery or slavery-like services, like sales and trade of children, debt bondage and servitude, as well as forced and compulsory work, including forced and coerced recruitment of children to be involved in armed conflicts;
2.Use, delivery and offer of a child for prostitution, production of pornographic materials or participation in pornographic performances;
3.Involvement of children in illicit activities like production and sale of drugs, as defined in the relevant international agreements;
4.Any work that by its nature or circumstances in which it is performed is damaging for the health, security or moral of a person under the age of 18 years.[2]

As is seen the Convention contains rules for the efficient elimination of trafficking in children and recommendations to undertake measures for the protection of potential child victims of trafficking. In Convention no. 182 (Article3a) trafficking of children is listed as one of the worst forms of child labour. This is an issue which has received considerable attention in development policy and practice. In relation to children, anti-trafficking efforts revolve predominantly around discouraging or removing children from migration.

UNICEF and UNODC Efforts in Preventing and Combating Child Trafficking in India
Different United Nations agencies have done commendable work in the arena of preventing and combating child trafficking world over. The efforts of UNICEF and UNODC towards fighting this menace in India deserve special mention in this context.

UNICEF is guided by the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), which has been ratified by most countries. The UNICEF strategy for addressing child trafficking focuses on four main areas: Raising awareness about the problem; providing economic support to families; improving the access to and quality of education and; Advocacy for the rights of the child. The implantation of the Integrated Child Protection Scheme (ICPS) newly launched by the Government of India is supported by UNICEF so as to create a protective environment for children through the improvement and expansion of services for children in need of care and protection and children in conflict with the law under the provisions of the Juvenile Justice Act and related legislation.[3]

In order to contribute to a reduction of child labour by strengthening child protection structures to adequately protect children against exploitation and abuse, improving the quality of education to increase enrolment and retention, raising awareness and empowering families and communities so that they take collective action against child labour, and addressing exclusion of vulnerable families to service provision and social protection schemes, UNICEF adequately supports the government.[4]UNICEF also works in close collaboration with the Ministry of Women and Child Development and other stakeholders to reduce the incidence of child marriage, ensuring implementation of the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act and addressing the social norms that underline this practice.[5]In addition to these, there are other areas where UNICEF supports the Government of India and other partners in their efforts of prevention of child trafficking and the rehabilitation, return, and integration of trafficked children; the fight against corporal punishment; promotion of birth registration; and strengthening its knowledge base on the situation of children and child protection issues in the country.[6]UNODC on the other hand provides livelihood and psychosocial support to survivors of trafficking in shelter homes, especially women and children in India. In close collaboration with state governments and NGOs UNODC also strives to ensure quality care and support services to victims of human trafficking, The caregivers were trained on issues of self-esteem and emotional intelligence while dealing with women and children, addressing inter-personal relationships in the shelter home and even dealing with their own feelings as caregivers. They were also motivated to adopt stress management techniques apart from orienti was also initiated by UNODC to provide quality care and support services to vulnerable children at risk of physical and sexual abuse and to provide comprehensive rehabilitation opportunities to trafficking survivors. The initiative was significantly aimed at strengthening community structures and building institutional capacity of non-governmental and governmental organizations working with children, and initiate training on child protection for care providers.

Through its engagement with the Ministry of Women and Child Development, UNODC and state governments of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Karnataka provided psycho-sociological training to more than 650 care givers from takers to understand the needs and emotions of children in need of care and protection in a better manner. In the state of Tamil Nadu, with an aim to understand the psycho-sociological needs of children (including those with mental disabilities), UNODC is supporting an organization in partnership with Nimhans to conduct a quick assessment and develop a model to enhance the quality of life of children living in government their psycho-social condition, to identify children with mental health problems and start early intervention.

This initiative has been appreciated since it addressed an area that is usually neglected the mental health of children in shelter homes. Also UNODC in its efforts to strengthen victim/witness protection has collaborated with one of its partners in the state of Andhra Pradesh with the following envisaged outcomes: increased conviction of traffickers, increased number of witnesses attending court, increase in charge sheets filed, reduced instances of retrafficking, reduced adjournments and speedy disposal of cases. In addition to that, the Ngo was supported to provide training to the judiciary to ensure speedy disposal of cases, thereby reducing the chances of traffickers going free without punishment. As a result, the conviction rate of traffickers and brothel keepers in the state has increased; because of the efforts of UNODC’s work centers on strengthening criminal justice responce.[7]

Legal Framework to address Child Trafficking in India
Article 23(1) of the Indian constitution specifically prohibits ‘trafficking in human beings’.
Also Article 24 prohibits all forms of forced labour and provides that no child under the age of fourteen can be employed in any factory or mine or in hazardous work.

The Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, (ITPA) 1956 states abouttrafficking and its objective is to abolish trafficking of child girls for the purpose of prostitution by an organized means of living. The offences specified in the Act are procuring, including or taking persons for prostitution; detaining a person in premises where prostitution is carried on; prostitution is or visibility of public places; seducing or soliciting for prostitution; living on the earnings of prostitution; seduction of a person in custody; and keeping a brothel or allowing premises to be used as a brothel.[8]

The Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986[9]prohibits employment of children in certain specified occupations and also lays down conditions of work of children.

The Information Technology Act, 2000states about penalty for publication or transmission in electronic form of any material which is lascivious or appeals to prurient interest or if its effect is such as to tend to deprive and corrupt persons to read, see or hear the matter contained or embodied therein. The law has relevance to addressing the problem of pornography. India has also adopted a code of conduct for Internet Service Providers with the objective to enunciate and maintain high standard of ethical and professional practices in the field of Internet and related services. Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000[10]which has been enacted in consonance with the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) consolidates and amends the law relating to juveniles in conflict with law and to children in need of care and protection. The law is especially relevant to children who are vulnerable and are therefore likely to be inducted into trafficking.

Under theIndian Penal Code, 1860[11]there are 25 provisions relevant to trafficking. The most significant among them are Section 366A which makes procuring of a minor girl below 18 years of age) from one part of the country to another punishable; Section 366B which makes importation of a girl below 21 years of age punishable; Section 374 which provides for punishment for compelling any person to labour against his will. Moreover, some states have also enacted their own Acts to prevent child trafficking.

The Karnataka Devadasi (Prohibition of Dedication) Act, 1982[12]has made the act of dedication of child girls for the ultimate purpose of engaging them in prostitution unlawful whether the dedication is done with or without consent of the dedicated persons.

The Andhra Pradesh Devadasi (Prohibiting Dedication) Act, 1989[13]imposes a penalty of imprisonment for three years and fine are stipulated in respect of anyone, who performs, specifically defines trafficking. Every type of sexual exploitation is included in the definition of sexual assault. The responsibility of ensuring safety of children in hotel premises under the Act is assigned to the owner and manager of the establishment; photo studios are required to periodically report to the police that they have not sought obscene photographs of children and stringent control measures are established to regulate access of children to pornographic materials.
However, though the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1986 and the Indian Penal Code, 1860 addresses the issue of trafficking in human beings, they do not provide a comprehensive legal framework for protecting children from trafficking. The greatest shortcoming of the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1986 and the Indian Penal code, 1860 is that they neither provide for a definition of child trafficking nor prohibit activities committed by child traffickers in compliance with the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children (the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of a child for the purpose of exploitation).

Furthermore it has to be highlighted that the domestic legal framework addressing trafficking in human beings does not contain provisions in relation to the assistance that should be provided to child victims in order to support their recovery and reintegration. These loopholes should be urgently addressed through an effective harmonization process with that of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 and the provisions of the Trafficking Protocol.

Initiatives Undertaken By the Indian Government for Protection and Rehabilitation of Children
The Government of India has taken many initiatives to ensure maximum protection of children.

These are:
1.Establishing Child Line: A child in distress or an adult on his/her behalf can access this 24-hour phone service by dialling the number 1098. Child Line provides emergency assistance
2.UJJAWALA Scheme: The Ministry launched the UJJAWALA scheme in 2007-08 for the benefit of women and girls in difficult circumstances, with specific focus on the special needs of trafficking victims.
3.Kishori Shakti Yojana:This Yojana is a holistic initiative supporting the development of adolescent girls in the age group of 11-18 years so as to promote awareness of health, hygiene and nutrition, as well as link girls to opportunities for learning life skills, returning to school and developing a better understanding of their social environment.
4.Scheme for Rescuing Trafficking Victims:Through small pilot projects this scheme targets to address trafficking in women and children for commercial sexual exploitation.

5.Community Based Prevention Measures on Child Trafficking: While adopting a range of comprehensive measures for ensuring protection of children, preventing children from falling prey to sex traffickers must be taken as a first step. Starting from mobilisation and awareness building among families and the general public to more targeted and specific interventions that percolates to children at risk and vulnerable because of the specific conditions of their lives prevention strategies encompasses a broad range of multi-dimensional interventions. In the year 2008 the Indian government launched an Integrated Plan of Action to Prevent and Combat Human Trafficking with special focus on Children and Women. The objective was to bring into mainstream and to reintegrate the women and child victims of trafficking in society. This Plan of Action incorporates several community based initiatives so as to prevent trafficking such as awareness raising programs directed to particularly vulnerable communities and the involvement of communities to act as watchdogs and informants on traffickers and exploiters This UJJAWALA Scheme contains specific community based programmes to prevent trafficking in women and children including the formation and functioning of Community Vigilance Groups including youth groups and awareness raising campaigns through mass media including kalajathas, street plays, puppetry or through any other art forms, preferably traditional. However, its implementation has yet not reached its objectives due to a lack of initiatives in terms of awareness raising and education on the issue of human trafficking.

The Ministry Child Prostitution (CACCP) consists of multiple stakeholders derived from the Central and State Government, United Nations agencies (e.g. UNICEF, UNIFEM, UNODC), national and international non-governmental organizations and other civil society key actors. The overall monitoring of the Integrated Plan of Action to Prevent and Combat Human Trafficking with special focus on Children and Women is done by CACCP and at the state level the State Advisory Committees do so. On similar lines with CACCP, the State Committees comprises of members from selected local and international NGOs, United Nations agencies women's commissions, senior police authorities and social welfare directors, etc. The Committees issue regular reports, pose questions to authorities on action being taken in and across states, disseminate information and meet to review progress every three months.

Furthermore, under the Chairmanship of the Secretary, Ministry of Women and Child Development a Think Tank on Public Private Partnership to Prevent and Combat Trafficking of Women and Children was created in 2008 in order to involve the corporate sector within the multi-stakeholder approach to tackle trafficking in women and children.[14]

Special Services for Child Victims of Trafficking in India
A child line 1098is operated nationwide and 24 hours to provide assistnce to children in need of help but it is not specialized to offer appropriate support for child victims of trafficking.

State established Shelters: Government shelters are working closely with non-governmental organisations and the Child Welfare Committees to improve the care standards in these institutions, but significant improvements are still necessary.

Medical Services offered to child victims of trafficking: In general medical services are available for all children who require special care and attention, including child victims of trafficking although they are not seen or recognized as a different category of children in need.

Psychological Counselling Services: Although States have made some improvements to their shelter care, victims in these facilities do not receive comprehensive protection services, such as psychological assistance from trained counsellors. These services are hardly available and totally inadequate in light of the needs. What services exists are mostly provided by nongovernmental organisations.

A Protocol for Pre-rescue, Rescue and Post-rescue operations of child victims of trafficking for commercial sexual exploitation under which every identified child victim of trafficking should be placed in a specific shelter or home which can provide him/her with adequate support has been developed by the Ministry of Women and Child Development. In India, the Ministry of Women and Child Development runs many shelters and homes for victims of trafficking all over India. Children can also be placed in shelters run by non-governmental organisations, however the majority of them aim to assist vulnerable children in general and not child victims of trafficking specifically. Furthermore, there is not enough shelters to accomodate larger number of child victims of trafficking and protection efforts often suffered from a lack of sufficient financial and technical support from government sources.[15]

Non-Governmental Organizations and its Networks to Address the Problem of Trafficking of Children in India
Different non-governmental organizations in India have established programs and projects in order to provide education and vocational training to the risk groups of populations in the country. The programs are mostly aimed at preventing children from being deceived and trafficked and also for decreasing the problems related to illegal migration. Although welfare non-governmental organizations within limited funds and space.[16]Despite their limited resources, funding, training, and access to information, most non-governmental organizations have taken the lead in combating trafficking. There are a number of non-governmental organizations which have played credible roles in the field of trafficking to serve and save individuals.

PLAN India is a child- centered advancement association that aims to promote child rights and improve the quality of life of vulnerable children. PLAN works in 13 States in India and has specifically affected existences of over a million children and their families since 197. The protection and child participation, children in difficult circumstances, education, HIV/AIDS awareness, health, early childhood care and development etc..

Shakti Vahiniin Delhi ensures that the trafficking cases are investigated properly and exploitation happening from source, transit and destination are linked. Since 2010, Shakti Vahini has intervened in 1270 cases and rescued 1300 victims. It has also been part of 462 court proceedings and trial and has achieved conviction in 26 cases till date.

Apne Aap in Delhi was founded in 2002 and since its formation it has been continuously framing a broad and proper definition and criminalizing of trafficking in the Indian Law, based zed women and girls to gain independence from prostitution by organizing and supporting small self-empowerment groups, called Mandals.

Bachpan Bachao Andolan is a pioneering child rights movement working to end child trafficking, campaigning for the rights of children. Bachpan Bachao Andolan had organised several raids across India rescuing 1,152 bonded child labourers.[17]

Victims Assistance
Victims Assistance is vital to ensure the protection of children who have been victims of trafficking for bonded or forced labour and to ensure the restitution of their rights. BBA engages a number of strategies ranging from the identification of trafficked victims to their rescue, the provision of immediate care and assistance, the prosecution of their employers, statutory rehabilitation and other legal aids.

Rescue
BBA’s pioneer intervention model provides protection to victims of trafficking for bonded or forced labour and slavery, by rescuing them from exploitation and enabling their access to services under the rule of law.
The process of victim’s assistance starts with the identification of cases or the receipt of complains and includes the detailed preparation of conducting raid and rescue operations, the prosecution of traffickers/ employers and the rehabilitation of survivors.

Prosecution
There are stringent penalties for employers of children under Indian legislation. BBA files complaints in the name of victims in order to achieve the prosecution of their employers. This includes fines, the recovery of back-wages and in some cases imprisonment.

Rehabilitation
BBA works to ensure access to rehabilitation services including statutory benefits. For this purpose, BBA also operates its own rehabilitation centres.

Missing children
BBA had filed the first complaint for the missing children of Nithari in 2006 under the assumption that the children were victims of trafficking. BBA pioneered the first consulted effort in the country on the issue of missing children and its linkages with trafficking. The research established that every six minutes a child goes missing in India and over a 100,000 children go missing in the country each year. The research paved the way for a petition before the Supreme Court of India resulting in a landmark direction on the issue of missing children.

Rehabilitation
BBA actively ensures that children are protected and are not vulnerable to being re-trafficked. Rehabilitation measures include eminent support given, like trauma counseling and the care and protection provided in children’s homes and transit rehabilitation centers. At the same time, BBA also ensures compensation and access to government services, including housing and other development schemes.

Statutory rehabilitation
The combination of illiteracy and poverty is often a determining factor for a child being drawn into child labour or child trafficking. BBA tries to mitigate these factors by ensuring that former child labourers get economic compensation from the employer, trafficker and the state. This compensation is received in the form of backwages as layed down in the 22nd May 2012 judgement, a fine on the employer, guaranteed under the 15th July 2009 judgement and compensation as provided by a rehabilitation package under bonded labour law. There are also centrally sponsored schemes allowing for the rehabilitation of bonded labourers.
Immediately after rescue, a child is taken to a children’s home wherever possible. For Delhi and surrounding areas Mukti Ashram, established on the outskirts of Delhi, is a safe haven.

Mukti Ashram
Established in 1991, Mukti Ashram was the first centre in India for protected bonded workers. Since 2007, Mukti Ashram has developed as a model for giving quick help and access to services for children protected from child work and trafficking. In the short-term home, children receive food, clothing, shelter, medical aid, psychological and legal assistance, recreation and everyday care. BBA ensures that the children get best quality care to overcome the trauma of slavery and servitude.

While at Mukti Ashram, the children receive non-formal education, trauma counselling and rights based empowerment, which eases the process of their reintegration into the society. To ensure that parents do not fall prey to the enticement or the deception of economic gains through child labour, they are also made aware and encouraged to pledge against all forms of child labour and are explained the virtue of education.

Bal Ashram
Located in Rajasthan and established in 1998, Bal Ashram serves as a long term rehabilitation and training center of Bachpan Bachao Andolan that specialises on the needs of victims of child labour. Nestled amongst the picturesque Aravalli Hills, Bal Ashram’s main focus lies in providing quality education, vocational training and skill development as well as showing compassion and giving love to the children. Bal Ashram is a place where the children can lead a normal, happy and dignified life

Ground Realities
It has been observed that the inherent complexity of the issue of trafficking coupled with lack of data on the one hand and a heightened commitment to urgently rectify the problem on the other hand, has resulted in overenthusiastic responses in many instances. The very assumption that tightening the screws will lessen the crime has led to such overenthusiastic responses. However, contrary to their goal, several of these responses have not achieved the aim of promoting the human rights of those trafficked. The lack of rigorous indicators for evaluating the impact of anti-trafficking interventions at various levels further weakens the interventions ambit of anti-trafficking initiatives. The lack of reliable data and the gap in devising a rigorous research methodology for procuring good data on trafficking continues to pose a major challenge.[18]

In the areas of policy and legislation, rescue and repatriation and interception of seemingly potential victims of child trafficking at the border points during the process of transportation and migration, it is worth noticing that a tightening of the screws strategy has strengthened the overenthusiastic and dominant responses to trafficking. There has been implementation of a number of increasingly stringent laws with draconian measures and harsh punishments. At the same time, aggressive and intrusive rescue operations with little regard to the personhood, wishes or rights of the trafficked person have been conducted. In many cases during trials, judicial procedures which are not rights based have been employed with little attention to witness protection in many cases. Evidence reveals that in some instances prevention initiatives at source have been tantamount to restricting women’s right to freedom of movement reinforcing thereby the patriarchal practice of keeping them trapped within the four walls of the home as a measure of protection. Rehabilitation has sometimes meant nothing than a change in venue of the victim’s confinement from a brothel to a shelter.[19]

Conclusion
The lack of a holistic understanding and awareness of the problem remains the greatest challenge to any intervention on child trafficking. Because of this lack of understanding there are no reliable estimates of the magnitude or a comprehensive legal framework. Most of the existing literature or national level field-based research has been disproportionately focussed on trafficking for prostitution. Even the micro research studies undertaken by nongovernmental organizations and International non-governmental organizations in India once again focussed primarily on trafficking for prostitution. There is no dearth of legislation and policies for preventing child trafficking in India and only a small number of these anti-child trafficking interventions have been evaluated and an even fewer number have been evaluated rigorously.

At all the levels coordination, cooperation, and support from government agencies is essential for effectively preventing and rescuing trafficked children. Conducting research on the issue of child trafficking one can discover more efficient intervention programs and policy development with significant information and understanding regarding trafficking in women and children. A thorough research on a number of aspects connected with trafficking of children such as the detailed information regarding the number of children trafficked, factors contributing towards the trafficking, trafficking networks and impacts on individual victims have to be undertaken for the trafficking intervention strategies to work effectively. Continuous research and well informed intervention programs and implementations are therefore craved for.

An effective monitoring and interception system at the community level created by the community itself can prove to be a successful child trafficking intervention. Panchayats must start taking up child protection and trafficking of girls related issues in their functioning. Integration of trafficking related issues in the functioning of panchayats will lead to greater awareness and efforts to prevent trafficking. In every Gram Sabha meeting there should be a discussion on the issue of protection of each and every child in the community. Panchayat should also discuss the issue of missing children in the meetings and the Panchayat representatives must share these issues with block level officials, collecting data on missing children, number of people migrating out of the village and number of girls getting married at an age of less than 18 years of age.[20]

End-Notes
[1]United nations human rights, Convention on the Rights of the Child
http://www.ohchr.org/en/professionalinterest/pages/crc.aspx (last visited on Nov. 5, 2016).
[2]International labour organisation,” Convention on the Worst Forms of Child Labour (No. C182) 1999,http://www.ilo.org/dyn/normlex/en/f?p=NORMLEXPUB:12100:0::NO::P12100_ILO_CODE:C182 (last visited on Nov. 6, 2016).
[3]UNICEF, Child Protection in India, unicef.in/Story/190/Child-Protection-In-India (last visited on Dec.9, 2016
[4]Ibid.
[5]Ibid.
[6]Ibid.
[7]Asia-Pacific Human Rights Information Center, India: Strengthening Law Enforcement for the Prevention of Human Trafficking, www.hurights.or.jp/.../10 UN Office on Drugs and Crime.pdf (last visited on Nov. 10, 2016).
[8]The Immoral Traffic Prevention Act, 1956.
[9]The Child Labour (Prohibition and Regulation) Act, 1986.
[10]The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000.
[11]The Indian Penal Code, 1860.
[12]The Karnataka Devadasi (Prohibition of Dedication) Act, 1982.
[13]The Goa children’s Act 2003
[14]Government of India, Annual Report, Ministry of Women and Child Development (2008)
[15]Population Council, Trafficking of Minor Girls for Commercial Sexual Exploitation in India: A Synthesis ofAvailable Evidence (2014).
[16]Apeksha Kumari, Role of Non-Government Organizations in Confronting Trafficking In India, 14 American International Journal of Research in Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences 198- 200 (2014).
[17]Ibid.
[18]Kamala Kempadoo, Jyoti Sanghera, & Bandana Pattanaik, Trafficking and Prostitution Reconsidered: New Perspectives on Migration, Sex Work and Human Right (2015).
[19]Ibid.
[20]“Anti-Child Trafficking Interventions In India: Ground Realities”: Dr. Ruma Bordoloi, Principal, NEF Law College, Guwahati, Assam. & Manashi Neog, Assistant Professor, Assam Rajiv Gandhi University of Cooperative Management, Assam.

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